Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Handling a Following Sea

I paddles down to the harbour today beacuse there's a 'jack-up' rig in and my wee boy wanted some pics of it.
Here's one if you're interested too?

The pic suffers from the water on the lense, I forgot I had a bit of chamoix (sp) in my BA. It was windy again today up to about 20mph I think, you can make it out on the water here:

I'm still not comfy going with the wind in this boat, despite reviews saying it was v. good at this, I still get moved about a bit.

Well today I experimented with the skeg, I found that a little bit of skeg and leaning back worked very well, better than full skeg or no skeg at all, I don't know why. I'll need to google for skeg use. My last boat had a rudder so it was either in or out.

Oh and another thing, both easytide and BBC tide Tables had the HW at 3.5m today, but the gauge on the harbour wall thinks differently.

From OilRig102_0228

Monday, February 26, 2007

Keel Strip Fitted

I got the boat back on Saturday, it was away getting a keel strip fitted. Neil Gray took three boats down to Edinburgh to have them done by a guy who makes his own kayaks.

First a couple of 'before' shots of the keel.

And here's what it looks like now.

The bow, not just squared off but tapered.

The stern is particularly well done

Around the skeg.

The long shot demonstrates how nicely it fits the boat, as if it always belonged there and was just missing from the original build.
Neil told me that the gadgy commented on how well built the Sirius was and it appears that he replicated the due care and attention in fitting the keel strip. Cheers to you whoever you are and a big thanks to Neil for taking the boat down.

Ah what the hell, I'm retro posing this bigger pic, just because I can !

Saturday, February 24, 2007

My Local Surf Spot

In the last year, after learning to roll, I have on occasion visited a local East Coast beach to muck about in the surf. After checking magic seaweed I realised that Wednesday and Thursday would be good. I went out at HW on Thursday after picking the kids up from school, as the wife was nightshifting.

The site was great but I wouldn't have gone in even if I could have, there wasn't really any beach, tha water was right up to the dunes.

The next day I couldn't get anyone to go with me, I'm not confident enough in my abilities to go completely on my own, I at least need someone to watch me from the beach.

I took the camcorder and these are some screen grabs. This was 90 mins after low water on Thursday 22nd Feb. Balintore Beach.

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Wednesday, February 21, 2007

You Silly Id-uit

You know when you wake up with an idea in your head ? Well after the nightshift I awoke this morning thinking that I would take that wooden home made paddle down to the water, my Sea kayak is away right now so I had to use the wee thing.

The dog was wise and went back into the house. It was 8degC today with no wind, quite nice.

I went in with the normal paddle first and warmed up then did a couple of rolls. I then grabbed the wooden thingy. Very strange, I felt it was harder to control the boat's direction and also the stroke was not as smooth. The water seemed to judder past the blades which doesn't happen at all with the 'normal' paddle.

Anyway I tried to roll with it and had no luck. Another swim to the beach again today then, hands freezing and basically useless on reaching the shore.

I had another new bit of gear today which helped a lot with my 'head in the sea' moments. A friend bought me this for my birthday. He tried it on before giving it to me and was worried it was too little. I can testify that this thing is REALLY tight, but I think it needs to be.

It's action is probably spoiled slightly by the fact that I have to slot my glasses into it and so open up gaps on both sides.
The hood can also be slipped back when it's warm and easily stretches into this position despite it's initial close fit.

So there's you have it, two bits of gear tested today, the paddle needs more testing but the hood worked very well.

Saturday, February 17, 2007

More Boat Work and Bike Work.

I haven't been out in the boat for weeks. It's been sitting upside down with the hatches off.

Today she should be off for a wee trip down the road. Neil Gray is taking her down to have a keel strip fitted. So it will be at least another week before I see her again.

Also I finally bit the bullet and bought a new pair of forks for the bike as the other ones had a habit of seizing up.

I went for another budget pair as I couldn't really justify going for some super DH monsters.

The Tora's are still a big improvement on the old Quadras though.

You can adjust the compression and also lock them out (almost) completely.

Theres a rebound adjust too.

I just had to get a new stem to go with the forks, and it's a proper Kona one to go with the bike instead of that club roost one I had.

Looks like I'll be doing more biking than paddling this week.